With NaNoWriMo a little under two weeks away, now is usually about the time I start thinking about which story I’m going to have a bash at telling. I’m kind of a mix between a planner and a panster, to be honest. I always like to start out with a plan (however basic and vague it might be), though plots and characters often end up changing dramatically as I write. But as I get started with my own prep, today I thought I’d share with you a template for my version of a ‘story bible’. Continue reading →
Today’s blog post is brought to you by massive amounts of excitement as one of my short stories, ‘History’ has been published in The First Line by BlueCubiclePublications!
The story is a science fiction short about a young woman making her way through the ruins of her old home city, which suffered a catastrophic event. It’s a piece that came out of my CampNaNo project and I’m really proud of it.
If you’ve enjoyed the stories on this blog, I think you’ll like this one, so why not head over here and grab yourself a copy of the magazine!
Under a Rock, by Jonone (click-through for full size!)
Garrett watched the sunrise from behind an old beaten up carrier that had been gutted decades ago. All that was left was the shell, a blistered, broken mass of metal that once knew how to fly. Sad, he thought, tipping back his hat and squinting into the wind. Time was he’d have maybe been a pilot himself. Sat behind a board full of pretty blinking lights and taken off, broken atmo with a smile and a purpose and money in the bank.
There was a creak followed by a muffled snap, distant and quiet, off to his left. Someone was trying to get closer. Garrett sniffed the air, and settled his hat back firmly on his head, down over his eyes. His back was aching, pressing into the ship’s old carcass, heating up with the sun as it rose.
Another creak, light footfalls skittering over the ruins of the graveyard. Woman maybe, or a boy. Young either way, starving like the weeds that sprouted up from between the cracked dirt just to wither. Whoever they were, they were getting closer and moving faster. Figured him for an easy mark, sleeping under the sky, miles from anyone who might give a fig about justice or the proper way of settling things… Continue reading →
Please excuse me while I collapse into a pitiful heap, surrounded by empty wine bottles and snapped pencils, scattered between piles of paperbacks and notebooks. I’m here! I did it!
I think I became some weird form of literary zombie during the month though… But don’t worry, I probably won’t try to eat your brains*.
And you’ll have to forgive me for being so utterly, unabashedly pleased with myself. I’ve been dipping in and out of the NaNoWriMo scene since I was at uni over a decade ago, and I’ve never once managed to cross the finish line.
The storyverse my novel takes place in started out as a world building exercise last year. I wanted to create an interesting system with a few habitable planets, an asteroid belt with a couple of space stations and a big old ship that housed the entire government, which traveled from one orbit to another. Continue reading →
I always been more of a planner than a pantser. I build the outlines of my stories with as much research and precision as I can manage, staring over their blueprints like an architect with a deadline. I never really saw the joy in the pantser perspective – just planting little buds of plot here and there like a gardener and allowing them to grow into whatever the story needed them to be. Because how on earth could you trust the story to tell itself?
Well, for all the ups and downs I’ve had this week, I suppose I’ve discovered that I might have a green thumb after all. Continue reading →
Below are some details about the project I’m working on for camp this year. I’ve struck gold this time round with a really active cabin too, the whole process is just so much more rewarding when you’ve got people to talk about it with. If you’re participating and want some cheerleading, let me know, I’m all about it! :D
Temporary cover art courtesy of ARTek92 (click-through for the full image!)
The year is 2257, but where we are is far from Earth. Across the galaxy, within the Virgo constellation, mankind has become a spacefaring race. In a solar system within its local cluster, three habitable planets orbit a star; Elyon, Alith and Forma as well as a vast asteroid belt, known as The Reach.
This belt and has become the focal point for industry within the system. The rocks are home to thousands of mining habitats and ports. After an AI rebellion and subsequent cull, the work force has been recruited from prisoners from each of the three planets. Now, being found guilty of any crime results in transportation to the Reach. But little do the citizens of the system know; state prisoners aren’t the only ones who end up there.
This massive enterprise is under the control of a single corporation, Mindus7.
Forced into perilous jobs, miners work in groups; some augmented with neural implants to become Operators, able to guide and control the vast machines that drill and process materials. While others are given replacement limbs and injected with steroids, becoming Mechanics strong enough to carry out repairs in the maze of tunnels they’re are forced to call home.
For seasoned Mechanic Garrett, The Reach was escape, freedom from drowning in the filth of Alith’s slums. But his new Operator, Reid, insists he is the victim of false imprisonment – having been taken from his home on Elyon under false pretenses. Between the two of them, they face more than just the harsh reality of dying before completing their sentences. But soon even conspiracies, industrial terrorism and the possibility of escape seem trivial when compared to the bond which develops between them.
Being implanted with an Identity Chip becomes a reality in my NaNo novel. Picture sourced from SingularityHUB, here.
I will apparently end this crazy month the way I began it, running on very little sleep and forgetting to update my word counts. My story will be longer than the 50,000 words that I’ve set myself as a target, but I seem to have moved my focus away from the challenge itself and more towards the story in my head. It keeps getting bigger and I’ve been struggling to keep up as it evolves.
I mentioned at the beginning of the month that I’m not a panster, but as my novel moves away from the basic plotlines I had set out and becomes something different, I can understand why people start this with nothing in their head but a single place or character to work from. Continue reading →